If you’re wondering, no my Chinese still isn’t really that much improved, but hey at least I’m trying here. Imagine if I could write this entire thing in Chinese…that would be a feat. Instead you get to enjoy all of this in 英语.
A Month at Jiao Tong University
4 weeks in Shanghai went by just like that and with me “graduated” from my summer language course I’m spending this weekend wrapping things up, partying one last time with friends I’ve made out here and packing for my leg 2 of my adventure. As I reminisce this past month I’m definitely going to miss my time out here. But as one thing ends…Taiwan, Palau Islands and Japan awaits. On top of that I get to see Chantelle soon!
Ah the student life…
- Monday to Friday
- Wake up at 7
- Walk + subway to Jiao Tong University for 45 minutes
- 8:30am to 11:50am class
- Lunch with friends
- Roam around somewhere or chill/work/blog/study at a coffee shop
- Dinner at home
- Review/study Han Yu
- Friday/Saturday (re-living my early 20s)
- Then more club
- Sleep in
- Sleep in
- Do nothing
Summer Language Exchange Experience at Shanghai Jiao Tong University (SJTU)
Why I chose SJTU
- I’ve been wanting to spend more time with my grandparents in Shanghai
- Jia told me about his excellent experience at SJTU when he went during his undergrad so that alone was enough for me
- The other schools like Fudan University was too far from the city
- Basically if you wanted to learn Mandarin and party at the same time SJTU was the place to be
- My main purpose for coming out here was to improve my vocabulary, learn how to read and maybe write
- On registration day and during the placement component they really didn’t know what to do with me because I could speak and listen decently but had absolutely no skill in pin yin, reading or writing. I was neither her nor there so I was placed in C class to start off (A being the lowest level and F the highest). I tried C class on the Monday but found it to be too slow because all we did was have chats with the class on basic topics. The teacher recommended that I go to D which I did the next day. I could immediately tell it was a lot more difficult which I figured would be more conducive to making me work a little harder. The teacher however said his class was a bit full so told me to try the other D class (there were 3 in total) which is where I eventually settled in. The teacher in this D class was pretty good and had a good balance of going through the textbook lessons and class discussions. We pretty much went through a lesson a day so it was quite accelerated. Homework wise we had dictation every other few days and would often have to complete certain exercises in the book.
- I have to say that D class got progressively harder and I soon realized that I was out of my league in this class. I say this because although nobody was quite like me in that both my parents are Chinese, everyone’s Mandarin was very excellent. Everyone has been studying Mandarin for at least a year and some have been in Shanghai since the beginning of the year or earlier. I was thoroughly impressed. As a result I was pretty much the most retarded one in the class. Luckily I found my equal in this other Korean kid (Woo I Gon) and we bonded pretty quickly as desk mates. As an example, we would often have to read 2 passages in our textbook and by the time the teacher told us to stop we were still struggling to finish the first one while everyone else was long done. I made a call early on that I just had to focus my efforts on one thing which was to learn how to read some of the basic characters. Instead of focusing on learning the vocab words I was literally trying to get my reading to the point that I could at least get through some sentences without struggling too badly. In retrospect, I probably should have stayed in C and tried another C class instead of jumping up to D.
- My grandpa and Chantelle helped me in the evenings so thank you for helping me get through my passages. Without reviewing passages in advance I spent the whole day in class trying to catch up and Pleco-ing everything. More on Pleco later.
- After 4 weeks I can say that I’ve definitely improved my Mandarin. Just being immersed in Mandarin all day forces you to use it everywhere you go whether it’s trying to read advertisements and signs, speaking to relatives and friends that don’t know too much English. I’m still a Mandarin retard but I’m excited that I can at least recognize words now haha. Although my final exam mercy pass mark of 67 doesn’t show it…I’m still a winner in my books lol.
- To be honest I was pretty disappointed my first week at SJTU. For some reason nobody seemed to want to make friends with other classmates. The Koreans stuck together. The Japanese stuck together. Everyone else seemed to know someone else in other classes and once class ended the room cleared out so fast. By the time I got up to leave the class everyone was pretty much gone. I made friends with a few classmates, Chris Becker from the States and Ema Mori from Japan that were willing to hang out so the first week it was pretty much just us constantly wondering where everyone else was at. That first week I was more or less just on my own. I literally had to randomly talk to people on the way to school or after school where everyone gathered in the lobby to get to know people in other classes. Eventually one day I met this Dutch Chinese guy, Will Huang, and he introduced me to his crew of friends. Once the second week kicked off people started loosening up and suddenly people were willing to talk to each other. The friend circle was a random collection of Americans, Canadians, Dutch, French, Swiss, Japanese, Malaysian, Paraguayan, Costa Rican etc. but people started organizing various events and night outings. During the school week it was more or less just lunch and then everyone would go back home to do their own thing. There was partying typically on Wednesday though I never went and then of course Friday and Saturday was always hardcore.
- I didn’t really get to hang out with my classmates as a whole until the last Friday of class which was a bit of a shame.
- The age mix was definitely a surprise to me as there were a lot more students closer to my age or older than I thought there’d be. Granted most of the students were around 20-23, but there were a few several students sent by their companies to learn Mandarin and some were even married. Oh and what was crazier was that there were some kids that were only 14 and 15 in my class. Despite my elderliness everyone still thought I was only 20 some :). I can still pull it off haha.
- One thing that I think hurt me was that I lived pretty far to campus so logistically I always had to think about whether there was time in between to go home to drop things off or change. And sometimes I would feel too lazy to go back out once I got home. To get anywhere it always took close to an hour from home. As a result I could never just do an ad-hoc meet up as some of the other guys that lived close to Xu Jia Hui.
Random tips for those that are thinking about doing a summer language program
- If you don’t have any relatives in Shanghai forget about staying at the dorms. I took a look at my friend’s place and it wasn’t that great. I then went to check out another friend’s place in an apartment nearby and realized how badly the on-campus people were getting ripped off. For the same price or less, this friend was splitting an apartment with 3 other people but it was HUGE and 10x nicer than what the dorm people were getting. Check out SmartShanghai/Craigslist before you get here and do yourself a favor and find your own place close to campus.
- Keep in mind that SJTU’s program is focused mainly on verbal which I kind of wish I knew about before. They don’t have anything that really tailors to people like me that want to focus more on reading and writing. All good – it was a blast regardless.
- Memrise (www.memrise.com) – Peet from South Africa told me about this on my first day and it was a pretty useful online site to use pneumatics to help you memorize and recognize Chinese characters. It’s currently free and if I have time back later on I’ll probably continue to learn the rest of the characters they teach.
- Pleco – Wow did this app save my life out here or what. In class I was constantly on this app trying to figure out what certain words were or translating English over to Chinese. If I had an iPhone 3GS or above I could’ve also gotten an add-on which allows you to use your camera, freeze frame on a passage and get on-the-fly translation. The one thing you have to be aware of with this app is that when you write the Chinese characters you need to have the proper strokes or else it won’t be able to pick it up. This was a blessing and a curse because some words I could never get to pop up but on the flip side I learned to correct my strokes.
- Americans call “pre-drinking” “pre-game” which I found amusing.
Chi Gwai Stuff
China is certainly a strange place. It’s almost like being in the wild west. Anything goes. I’ll just list a few out that I’m sure many of you can relate to 😉
- Spitting (I’ve seen this everywhere from the streets to malls and on the subway…gross)
- What queue? (Whether it’s trying to order some bubble tea, trying to get into/out of a subway or onto an escalator…I’ve wanted to cuss at them all)
- Guys with long nails (Can someone explain this to me because I don’t get it…whether it’s just the thumb or all fingers.)
- Clipping nails (God dammit just do this at home)
- Cars have the right of way (I’ve seriously wanted to challenge some of these cars when it’s clearly green for pedestrians. Scooters and bikes are even worse. It doesn’t matter if it’s red of green they don’t ever stop)
- Subway squish (If you’re going to take the subway during rush hour expect to be squished and shoved around. There’s a lot of dry humping and skin to skin contact not to mention a good amount of B.O. Just hope that the AC works properly on the subway or else you’ll be sweating the whole way through)
- Subway security checkpoint (Before you get to the point where you need to swipe your card to enter the subway station there’s a security checkpoint. I don’t get what the point is when it isn’t even mandatory. I’ve walked through countless times with a bag one. They just put their hand up and then nothing happens when I brush them off. Apparently this is due to the remnants of the 2010 World Expo and they felt bad about laying them off)
- Belly cooling (This must be one of the more chi gwai things in China. Guys just love to fold up their shirts from the bottom to cool off their bellies. Does that actually work? I really need to try it one of these times. Eliane Tang from Paris has an entire gallery of these which I thought was hilarious. Hopefully she’ll post them on Facebook soon!)
- Kids peeing in the open (I was in Qi Pu Lu and a girl was literally just squatting and peeing in the middle one of the aisles I was walking in. Very 奇怪 indeed)
- Public nose picking (kind of gross)
- PJ’s as outerwear (I wish I could pull this off back home!)
- T-shirts/menus/signs with random English words on it (I’m totally staring but I still can’t figure out what it’s saying)
Here are all the clubs that I went to over the course of these 4 weeks. One general thing I’ll say about clubs in Shanghai is that it’s not like how it is back home. It’s all about the tables and bottle service here. So you’ll find that clubs are 80% tables and 20% dance floor. This annoyed the hell out of me because you’ll pretty much spend the whole night at a club fighting off others trying to squeeze their way from A to B.
Music wise I also found that techno and trance is the music of choice as opposed to Top 40/Hip Hop/R&B. Alcohol of course is still expensive here and is comparable to back home. A bottle of beer is easily 40-50 RMB so the only time I really got drunk was when I went to a 100 RMB open bar place. Thankfully there’s no cover at most places so if you’re a cheapskate like most of us we pre-drank at someone’s place or at a restaurant and went club hopping for free the rest of the night.
- M1nt – Foreigners – $$$$ – No Cover – Shanghai’s premier club and I will have to agree. Their shark tank is huge. Fancy. Great view of Pudong too if you’re by the window
- M2 – Locals – $$$ – No Cover – This was the first club I ever went to Shanghai with Chris and this place was apparently way better than it is now. Now it’s overcrowded with locals and has a very tiny area for dancing. The only plus side to this place is that they hire these Euro dancers to come out every hour or something like that so at least you’re entertained.
- Hollywood – Foreigners – $$$ – 100 RMB cover after 12 for guys – On Wednesdays they have free food which I never got to go to sadly but aside from that this place is average. I went here on a Saturday night for someone’s birthday and even with a table it was pretty boring. It was so empty too. Apparently this place gets more busy after 3 or 4 AM since it’s more of an after hours club. Yeah that’s how hard people party around here.
- Phebe – Locals – $$$ – No Cover – Came here after Mural and for the half hour I was there it seemed decent. Dance space of course was at a minimum but seemed pretty happening at 3AM. Just be prepared to be surrounded by locals. Too bad Xing got pretty sick after we got there.
- Mural – Foreigners – $$ – 100 RMB open bar on Saturday – I probably had the most fun here of any night. It was hella hot here but there was actually space to dance and the music was good. Too many tequila shots.
- Apartment – Foreigners – $$$ – No Cover – This place is absolutely crap. The main floor we went to had two rooms. The first one we went to sounded like the DJ selected “Music from the 90s” and hit shuffle on his iPod. Just terrible. The other room wasn’t any better.
- Park 97 – Locals – $$$ – No Cover – I actually like this place though nobody seems to want to go here as the main event of the night. They play more of the top 40/hip hop stuff which I find more fun to dance to. There’s also a labyrinth of rooms and hallways upstairs.
- Muse (new one by the Bund) – Locals – $$$ – No Cover – This place just recently reopened near the Bund and so I checked it out on one of my last few nights in Shanghai. The place is nicely decorated and has a somewhat larger dance floor than others but on the day we went the music started getting worse after I arrived. Apparently it was better the week before.
- Bar Rouge – Foreigners – $$$ – 100 RMB Cover – This place has an amazing open air view of Pudong and strip poles but aside from that the music was crappy. What I’ll give them is that because it is open air at the back you can actually have a conversation with someone and not lose your voice.
- The Geisha – Foreigners – $$$ – No Cover – I was here for only 30 minutes with the pub crawl but it was pretty good while we were there. Dance/techno kind of scene but decent sized dance floor and not overcrowded with tables.
Yep we went to a lot of clubs. I wasn’t kidding.
I can’t say that I had a lot of great food in Shanghai because I was with budget student most of the times and tried to eat home as much as I could but I can recommend a few places that I did get to check out.
- Ding Tai Fung (Grand Gateway location) – always a winner
- Yang’s Dumplings (W. Nanjing location) – These Sen Jian (Fried dumplings but more like buns) were delicious
- Coco and Happy Lemon – You know I love bubble tea so I pretty much had one everyday…sometimes two. Basic milk tea was better at Coco I thought
- Lillian Bakery– Their Portuguese tarts are so good
- Mr. Pancake – Some of the most amazing pancakes ever!
- I went to two really good Japanese restaurants in the Gubei area but don’t remember their names sorry!
Yeah I really didn’t eat at too many fancy places.
To finish things off I’ve lumped everything else in here for those that are going to be in Shanghai anytime soon. These are tried and true tips that I hope you’ll be able to benefit from.
- The Great Firewall of China
- Why I didn’t think about looking this up before I left Canada I don’t know but after two weeks I finally figured out how to get passed the firewall.
- I don’t know if it was my internet at my Grandparent’s place or what but there were many pages that didn’t work for me including most of Google (surprisingly Gmail was okay). I was really frustrated that Google Maps didn’t work on my laptop but for some reason was okay on my phone. Even my blog only worked half the time.
- iPhone – I figured this out first and the trick here was to download the VPN app through your laptop and iTunes first and then transfer it over to the phone. Initially I tried to use AppStore on the phone but the firewall kept on blocking the connection. The one I used was called VPN Express. When you sign up you get 300 MB of free quota which is all I needed so it didn’t cost me a penny. I literally used my iPhone VPN for Facebook here and there.
- Mac – My Macbook took a bit more work. I got a bunch of suggestions from classmates and many seemed to use this Freegate thing but since I was already in China there didn’t’ seem to be a way to download it. Eventually I checked on VPNinja that the other Will recommended. I signed up and what was beautiful was that when I googled “VPNinja discount codes” I happened upon a site that had some usernames and passwords that were usable. I have no idea who’s account it was but it worked! Again free VPN for me J. If you want the username and password just e-mail me.
- SIM Card
- For the first week I was using my Grandpa’s CDMA phone that came with but I couldn’t stand carrying two phones. Plus I wanted to use data. I did some searching online and it seemed like this M-Zone package from China Mobile was the best value.
- Before going I made sure I brought my passport because China Mobile needs it in order to register the SIM card. The process was pretty painless but there are a few things that are a bit peculiar here. I signed up for a 26 RMB plan that includes a certain number of minutes, 100 SMS and 50MB of data but plans here only start at the beginning of the month. Since there was still a week left in June I had to use the higher pay-as-you-go rate for the remainder part of the month before July 1 came around. In less than a week I killed 50 RMB so you know how important it is to have a proper plan. When you sign up make sure you get the person to not only give you he SIM card but to actually activate it through the phone. Don’t expect to get any instructions in English either.
- Recharging was interesting too. I thought any convenient store would be able to recharge my phone but that wasn’t the case. I eventually found out that Ke Di was able to so I went in and I thought it would just be a matter of getting a printed slip with a code or something. Instead they had a number pad where you first have to enter your number in twice and then the lady applies the credits to the phone directly. This actually makes the process really easy but I was totally confused because they didn’t ask for the carrier or anything at all. You just punch in your number and voila that’s it.
- The iPhone kills a lot of data (duh) and even my 50MB wasn’t enough to last me the month of July so I got a bunch of these messages telling me I was running out (after using Google Translate). I realized that I could buy an additional data package online (sorry I can’t remember the website).
- Apparently China Unicom is the only company that offers anything close to 3G here. Even their 3G here is dumbed down according to government regulations. With China Mobile I could only get Edge but that was totally enough for me to get by.
- In total all I spent was a little over 100 RMB in 4 weeks to get a SIM card and have access to voice, text and data. Steal!
- The subway can pretty much take you anywhere you need to go. That being said the stupid thing shuts down at 11PM so if you’re going out you’re pretty much stuck with cabbing home. There’s nothing to do about it so I just had to deal with it.
- Getting a transit card will save you a lot of time. It’s basically like an Oyster/Octopus card. What’s awesome about it is that you can use it on the cab too.
- Fake clothes
- This time around I went to 3 different markets
- Science and Tech Subway Station – This is probably the most convenient to get to and very easy to navigate around. It has everything a tourist would really want so this place is highly recommended. Went here twice.
- 580 W. Nanjing Road – I actually went here first and picked up a few shirts and my Manhattan Portage bag. It’s on par with Science and Tech and more central but I think it’s slightly smaller and little less cleaner. There selection is a little less here as well.
- Qi Pu Lu – Wow this place was a complete waste of time for me. First you get of the subway and you’re surrounded by buildings that sell clothes but you have no idea which one is the original Qi Pu Lu market. And then as a guy you later realize that everything they sell is for women. This place is good for women but not for guys.
- Tailor-made clothes
- The go-to place for tourists is at Nanpu Bridge station on the 4 Line.
- The exact address is 399 Lu Jia Bang Road.
- I was recommended to 2F/No.253 by my Japanese classmate. I’m kind of glad I knew where to check out first because the building is 3 floors and every single store sells suits. You don’t even know where to begin.
- The negotiation was a bit daunting because I was totally unprepared but thankfully my aunt was able to negotiate through the phone for me my first time there.
- My first time around I ordered one suit (jacket, trousers and dress shirt) for 580 RMB (that’s less than 100 CAD!!). However later my Aunt took a look at the fabric and found out that they totally lied to me that it was 100% wool. What I got in reality was almost pure nylon. I couldn’t really tell the difference. I was actually quite happy with the quality and the fit but that led to my Aunt calling the owner and cussing her off. Apparently most tailor made suits they make there for that price bracket are all like that.
- My second time I went with my Aunt to the same shop and this time made sure we only saw the “real” fabrics. I proceeded to order another suit (100% wool this time) and a cashmere winter jacket. The cashmere material truthfully isn’t close to 100% and my Aunt said probably less than 50% but for the design I wanted and budget I thought that was fine. In total I paid 1280 RMB for both.
- If you want to do some homework on this, I would definitely recommend figuring out exactly what kind of suit/jacket design you want before you go to the market. What would be even better is if you bring a magazine cut out or print out of what you want. They can more or less customize everything.
- I can’t speak too much about the quality as my suits and jacket can conceivable fall apart after one use but for 600 RMB you almost can’t go wrong.
- Negotiating 101
- I don’t pretend to be a negotiating expert but here are some of my observations of the typical script that negotiation goes through every time.
- You take an interest in an object
- The shop owner gets you to take non-committal closer look/try it on
- For kicks you’ll ask for the price
- They give you a ridiculously high price hoping you’re a terrible negotiator
- You’ll rebuff and say that’s crazy
- The shop owner will then ask what you’re willing to pay for it
- This is probably the most critical point in the negotiation because they are hoping you make a mistake here. If it’s too high they’re laughing hysterically in their heads. If it’s just right, be prepared to actually have to pay for this thing. If it’s too low then fine. Although not always possible try to get an idea of how much this thing typically goes for from a seasoned veteran beforehand.
- You’ll probably say something 1/4 or 1/3 of the asking price and they’ll act all hurt that your price doesn’t even cover their costs or give them any profits blah blah.
- After their rant they’ll tell you they don’t want to waste anyone’s time and they slash the price by maybe 50 RMB.
- Here you’ll either have to stick to your original price if that’s really the most you want to pay or you go up by another 10 or 20 RMB.
- Repeat and rinse the last two steps a few times plus insert a few lines about how they need to feed their family blah blah where they basically ask you to bump your price up a bit more and more while they slowly lower theirs. They’re just trying to squeeze the most they can out of you.
- Eventually you’ll find a middle ground (not recommended) or you’ll stick to your original price and the finishing move for you is to start walking away.
- Once that happens they’ll start getting desperate and you’ll notice their price will dramatically drop by 100 RMB or more.
- You’ll turn your head back and continue to refuse and stick to your price
- They’ll shout at you some more about some “last price” or “best price”.
- Walk some more and then if you’re lucky they’ll concede.
- In Shanghai it feels like this or a variation of this is more or less what you go through EVERYTIME. It can be fun but can also be very annoying and tedious. Happy shopping!
- The Shanghai summer heat is unlike anything else I’ve ever had to endure through. Just expect to be constantly sweating when you’re outside. My clothes were always soaked. The only saving grace was that everyone else was dealing with the same thing and you hope your funk is less than the average China man funk.
- Shanghai summer heat is analogous to being baked in an oven. The air is so thick and stuffy.
- The only time it’s actually cool is when it’s raining or after rain. I actually preferred rainy days over any other day.
- So there’s no real remedy to this except maybe bring lots of dry-fit type of clothes and leave the jeans for clubbing nights only.
- Getting JR pass in China (where to go buy it)
- This was a mission and a half to get once I realized I needed to get a JR pass.
- First of all, yes you can still get a JR Pass in China if you didn’t get one back home.
- Second, many websites will tell you to go to the JAL Shanghai office in Middle Huai Hai Road. Don’t go there. They only sell JR passes to people that buy plane tickets from them. I had no idea but when I got there the lady was nice enough to give me this slip of paper (seems like they get people like me often) with instructions to go to the Shanghai Orient Peace International Travel Service at the Shanghai Railway Station stop. Look it up on a map before you go but the address is 511 Tian Mu Road (W) in the Jincheng Building. 23F-2307.
- Lastly, remember to bring enough cash. I totally forgot so I had to find a bank downstairs to withdraw from an ATM since I didn’t’ want to take the 3% credit card service charge hit. It cost me 2310 RMB for a 7 Day Econo JR Pass.
- The process was super easy and fast. Just pay and give them your passport. You can have the JR Pass voucher in a matter of 10 minutes.
- As most know, massages are super cheap in Shanghai. Shadier places will have 60 minute massages for 50 RMB whereas this one place I went to was about 89 RMB that was more legit and clean. And then there’s the high end ones where my uncle took me too which must’ve cost at least 500 RMB (for two hours though).
- Problem for me was knowing where to go because you pass by so many on the streets but you have no idea whether they’re good or not. The one I went to on my own I googled and was pretty good as the reviewer had written. The place was in the Jing An area and called Mei Gong Massage. The only problem was that it was a bit of a walk from the Jiangsu subway stop. Address: 1318 Ding Xi Road.
- Gyms near SJTU
- On my first day I went to find a gym to sign up with and found one at Metro City in Xu Jia Hui on the 5th floor called Physical. I was lucky in that they were running a summer promotion for students. Despite the promo, it was still expensive according to our standards – 500 RMB for a month.
- The facilities there are okay and although the equipment is a bit old and worked in, it was good enough for me. There was another place I heard about called Alexanders but its over 1000 RMB for a month which is way too much.
- I also got a trainer for 4 lessons while I was there. He tweaked what I was doing wrong which was good and learned a few other exercise as well. Originally he wanted 1200 RMB for 4 lessons but eventually talked him down to 600 RMB (under the table to the trainer himself instead of going to the gym). See everything is negotiable hah.
- Streaming Sites in China
- www.tuduo.cn – I didn’t bring movies with me this time around so this and youku let me stream some old movies. They had some new ones too like Ghost Rider 2 and Conan the Barbarian lol (all terrible)
- www.kuwo.cn – A really good music streaming site/downloading program for PCs actually. You have access to almost everything even North American stuff. Highly recommended. You can even download songs off the site in MP3 format (though low quality)
- Useful Shanghai iPhone Apps
- Hi Shanghai – I more or less exclusively used this app to figure out how to get to tourist spots, clubs or restaurants. For all destinations it has the full address in English and Chinese, a detailed map and a taxi mode to show your cab driver if you don’t understand what you’re saying
- Pleco – This app is so good and surprisingly free as well. It’s pretty much a dictionary replacement good for English to Chinese and Chinese to English so it’s extremely useful in class but also on the street when you want to say something but only know the English or want to translate something from Chinese. Download the add-on if you want to ability to use your camera to translate Chinese characters on the fly.
- I live in a very residential area and if you don’t want a fancy cut then the 10 RMB haircuts here are ridiculously cheap. That’s a haircut for less than $2. Just don’t get conned into doing extra things like perms or accept “extra services” 😉
- Spending time with my Grandpa and Grandma
- Spending the day with Chantelle on her flight over to Shanghai.
- Hanging out with my Uncle for a few rounds at the driving range, fancy Japanese food and a 2-hour long massage
- Cheap massages
- Buying fake things
- Getting tailor made clothes
- Working out harder than ever. Who thought I’d actually get more fit on vacation.
- Shooting range (who knew they had these in the city/archery is damn hard!)
- Going to some antique market and then the Bund on the hottest day of the summer (oh god it was so deadly)
- Clubbing like I’ve never done before – I’m getting too old for this!
- Checking out Yu Yuan and Qibao
- Going to teppanyaki with friends and constantly toasting to Carmen
- Playing soccer in the blazing heat with my shirt off
- Playing strange Korean drinking games with classmates
- Struggling badly in class with my deskmate
- Lillian Portuguese tarts
- And last but least….having bubble tea at Coco and Happy Lemon almost every day. SO MONEY!
All That Bund
Science and Tech for Knock Off Goods
Recommended G Adventures Tours
Check out the next in the trip series
To read about my adventures continuing on to Taiwan, check out Day 64 – Taiwan – Typhoon Fun.
If you’re looking to do any travelling around Japan, I highly recommend picking up a JRailPass. As you read, I had to pick mine up in China since I didn’t think that far ahead of time to buy a JR Pass. If you’re planning a trip to Japan in advance, I would suggest that you purchase it earlier and ship it to your home.